Daily Archives: February 1, 2012

Who Stole the Mona Lisa?


On 21 August 1911 the unthinkable happened, someone stole Leonardo Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa. The most famous painting in the world was gone and nobody had noticed. The next day, Louis Béroud, a painter, walked into the Louvre and went to the Salon Carré where the Mona Lisa had been on display for five years. However, where the Mona Lisa should have stood, he found four iron pegs. Béroud contacted the section head of the guards, who thought the painting was being … Continue reading

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Guess Who Won the Ron Nyholm Award

Ron Nyholm was an Australian inorganic chemist. His work mainly focused on preparing transition metal compounds, particularly those with arsenic ligands. He also was a passionate supporter for the improvement of science education. He is best-known in chemistry classrooms for his precise measurements of bond angles in molecules and his predictions of the shapes that various molecules would assume based on each element’s valence — the configurations of the outer electron shells of elements. I learned about this aspect of … Continue reading

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Mind-Reading may soon be a reality

By looking only at maps of electrical activity in the human brain, scientists were able to tell which words a person was listening to. The discovery is a major step toward being able to “hear” the thoughts of people who can’t speak. “If someone was completely paralyzed, or if a patient had locked-in syndrome with no movement, but the brain was still active and we could understand it well enough, we could develop devices to take advantage of that and … Continue reading

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Seeing really is believing


Want to know why sports fans get so worked up when they think the referee has wrongly called their team’s pass forward, their player offside, or their serve as a fault? Research from The University of Queensland’s School of Psychology and the Queensland Brain Institute found people actually see their team’s actions in a different way than they see those of other teams. The study, which was published in the journal Human Brain Mapping, randomly divided volunteers into blue and red … Continue reading

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The Fascinating History of the Chandrasekhar Limit

Young Chandra

Thanks to Phil Krause for suggesting this interesting subject – Deskarati – When a star starts running out of fuel, it usually cools off and collapses into one of three compact forms, depending on its total mass, a White Dwarf a Neutron Star or a Black Hole. The Chandrasekhar limit is the maximum mass of a stable white dwarf star. It was named after Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, the Indian astrophysicist who predicted it in 1930 at the age of twenty. After the earlier work of R.H Fowler and E.C. Stoner … Continue reading

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